Thursday, July 02, 2009
It's amazing how much pleasure there is to be had in a little walk around the garden at the house where I've now lived more than 22 years. Every day there is something new in bloom: right now, I'm especially enjoying my floppy pale pink antique rose, which smells so good although each blossom last little more than a day. The mock orange is another with a wonderful scent -- and I've brought in a bouquet of the two mixed together for the kitchen table.
My few little plantings of annuals -- white cosmos, bright red geraniums, a few snapdragons, some portulaca -- those are all pretty consistently colourful and I would not want to be without them. But what I like most is making a point of noticing as each of the old perennial friends predictably steps forward and takes its turn from spring to fall: snowdrops, crocus, hyacinths, anemone, daffodils, tulips, iris, lily of the valley, lilac, columbine, poppies, peonies, Dame's rocket all pretty much past with lemon drop and evening primrose sharing star billing with the roses and mock orange right now. I've got another yellow kitchen bouquet of those with a late deep red peony! And there will be lots more perennials -- sidalcea soon, liatris, sweet peas, lilies (Asiatic and daylily types) asters, golden rod, sedum, Rose of Sharon, trumpet vine, chrysanthemums, fall crocus. Plus flowers from my annual seeds -- nasturtium, morning glories -- still to come between now and fall.
Every day new, each flower never to be repeated. But every flower deeply familiar from all the years I've lived here and seen them bloom in sequence. And something new: I'm wondering if my just-planted Pink Fantasy clematis is going to oblige in its first season with a bloom or two!
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Tomorrow is July 1st. What we Canadians used to call Dominion Day. And now call Canada's birthday (it's our 142nd, if you're asking) or Canada Day, or whatever. The failure to be prescriptive about the name is in itself pretty typical of Canadian anti-patriotism; we don't tend to wear our hearts on our sleeves when it comes to love of country.
At our golf club, there is generally a Canada Day event. Everyone wears red and white golf clothes. You put a Canadian flag on your golf cart and carry it around the course -- quite a colourful sight. And then, when you've used up your allotted strokes (based on current handicap) you're supposed to plant your flag on the course at that spot. Which means that there are a few flags generally beginning about the 16h green or up the 17th fairway for people doing worse than usual. A few more at the 17th green. Yet more on either side of the 18th fairway, and clustered before the 18th green. If you get to put your flag on the clubhouse side of the 18th green, you've made it around under your handicap: which has never happened for me! And then there's a BBQ, maybe some live music, lots of friends -- a laid back celebration of "Canadianness".
This year I probably won't get to play -- the treatment-related fatigue factor. Or: maybe I'll just play a few holes. If not, I'll be sitting on my verandah looking up at my Canadian flag .
Because -- I am feeling particularly grateful this year to be Canadian. And especially for the Canadian medical system which has taken such good care of me worry-free. The whole six month treatment programme has cost me nothing more than parking fees at the hospital -- and even the parking has been discounted for the daily clinic visits. But the quality of the care has been amazing too -- professional, kindly, humorous, tactful. I'd be appreciative of that quality of human interaction at any price.
So even though most Canadians don't make a big deal about July 1st, I'll be feeling particularly Canadian tomorrow. Very glad to be so -- and glad to be getting healthier day by day.
And thankful too for the support of all the SparkPeople friends who've helped me with the weight loss part of getting healthier. Some Canadians --some from other parts of the world; and most the wonderfully warm and outgoing Americans. I do hope you Americans enjoy your July 4th celebration coming up with all the hoopla and hands on heart that Canadians don't do -- but some of us can just about imagine. Because just occasionally we let ourselves feel patriotic, too!
Thursday, June 25, 2009
I am sustaining my cheerful mood and feeling grateful for the excellent treatment I'm getting (reducing my statistical chance of recurrence from about 25% to maybe 2-3%) but: the cumulative effect of the series of treatments is making me somewhat fatigued, just as I was told to expect. And: some redness/skin reaction, also as I was told to expect. Which will culminate about 2 weeks after the last treatment (there are 6 to go).
So I'm not feeling able to get to the gym for my usual vigorous workouts every day, will have to take it easier, do what I can, keep on the programme from a nutrition-tracking perspective (not too hard, since appetite is also quite a bit reduced) and just have faith that I WILL do what exercise I can and get back into the full exercise routine (as I always have) when it's possible to do so.
This isn't a race, there is no deadline, I'm only 3 pounds from goal: and it will happen.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
OK, the scales aren't moving just now -- only tantalizing me by wavering a pound or two lower, pausing provokingly, and then settling back on the 158.5. (This is, of course, a more reassuring portent of better things to come than the reverse -- i.e. hovering higher with the old 6 in the middle: so I'm not complaining).
And while I'm waiting, what could be more fun on a rainy Saturday than shopping in my closet, trying on clothes I haven't been able to wear for awhile, deciding whether I can wear them now -- or maybe in 3.5 pounds when I reach goal weight -- or maybe not until I take it down a bit lower than that even.
Things that I can wear immediately: a sleek black suit (jacket, skirt, pants, not at the same time however) - all size 8. A scalloped-hem black skirt. A Mexx black skirt (seems to be a theme developing here). A bright red cotton shawl collar blouse. A blue linen skirt suit. Some Hawaiin print capris --for the golf course. And a pair of pale green golf pants. Pretty soon: a sweetheart neckline cream suit with pearl buttons. A blue gingham summer shirt. And a bright flowered cotton summer dress, very fitted through the bodice with a full skirt, deep side pockets. All of this determined in the context of thinking about which scarf, shoes, bag etc. I'd put with each of the outfits . . .
Two nice things about shopping in my closet: first of all, absolutely free, and even better than free because -- I already paid for this stuff. And second: when I paid for it, I'd chosen it because I liked it. Still do!
All of this if of course totally frivolous and girly stuff. And it's ridiculous how much fun it is!
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
It was a thrill to see a "5" as the middle number on the scales today! Just 3.5 pounds to go to goal weight, but I know it may take 3 or more weeks to get there: the weight comes off much more slowly at this point. However, wearing a size six (six!!: vanity six, but still a six!!) skirt yesterday was also very encouraging -- and it wasn't tight, wasn't uncomfortable. So the inches are coooperating too. It may be that when I get to goal weight I decide that it wouldn't hurt to peel back a few more: lean body mass is best to discourage recurrence.
Treatment schedule continues -- I've now completed 4 out of 16 -- and although a bit fatigued, so far nothing that can't be handled.
All in all: feeling good and enjoying the great people I've met through SparkPeople. Thanks, all.
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